Maui-Style Banana Bread

I have loved banana bread since I was a kid. I love it cold or warm, topped with butter or cream cheese or just plain. I prefer it without nuts, but if I’m making it with nuts, I love them to be toasted walnuts or pecans. Once I had banana bread with chopped macadamia nuts and it was fantastic.

While my husband and I honeymooned in Maui, we sampled a variety of local banana breads from roadside stands. The banana bread in Maui was so much richer and darker than what I grew up with. It was more dense and almost gooey too. I was hooked.

When we got home, I searched the internet for Maui-style banana bread recipes and tried a few, but none really got it right in my opinion. Some had crushed pineapple in the recipe, which really sounded terrible. I even got a couple of recipes from a friend’s auntie who lives in Kauai, but alas, it was not the same.

My husband and I wondered if there was a unique ingredient that was only available on Maui… maybe unique, Maui-grown bananas? Or maybe the banana bread achieved some sort of delicious awesomeness from sitting in the warm sun wrapped in plastic wrap waiting to be purchased by a hungry tourist.

The recipe below is the closest I have been able to come to that rich and gooey, Maui-style banana bread. And my preschooler loves to help me make it.

When it’s fresh from the oven, the edges are a little crispy and delicious. After a couple of days wrapped in plastic wrap (if it lasts that long), it’s still a fantastic treat. I like to put a slice in the microwave for about ten to fifteen seconds before eating.


  • 1 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large, very ripe bananas, mashed
  • 3/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
  • non-stick cooking spray or butter for pan


Heat oven to 350° F.

Grease a loaf pan with either non-stick cooking spray or butter.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the sugar, brown sugar, oil, vanilla, and eggs.

Peel and mash the bananas in a separate bowl. This is something my preschooler likes to do for me.

Add the bananas to the sugar and egg mixture and stir to combine.

In a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt together.

Add the dry mixture to the liquids and combine until smooth.

Pour batter into your greased loaf pan.

Bake at 350° F for 50 minutes.

Let it rest in the pan for 10 minutes and then flip it onto a cooling rack and let it cool. It’s normal for a canyon to form in the middle of the loaf when it’s cooling.


3 Responses to Maui-Style Banana Bread

  1. That looks amazing! Pinning this one for sure :)

  2. This looks like amazing banana bread. My son loves to help me make quick breads and I’m sure this would be a real hit! Wonder how it would work as mini muffins? Those are our favorites since we can freeze them and just pop them into the toaster over in the morning for a quick weekend breakfast.

  3. Pingback: Quick and Easy Freezer Meals Mama Say What?! | Mama Say What?!

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